Nortons Inc. directors have been extensively involved in competition and regulatory matters throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Members of the firm have recently assisted with the drafting of the Mauritian Competition Commission’s Guidelines for merger proceedings. Furthermore, our directors have also assisted various clients with merger control regulations (including the submission of notifications) in the following jurisdictions:
Nortons Inc. together with Geroudis Glover Ghurburrun assisted the Mauritian Ministry of Business, Enterprise and Cooperatives – the head Ministry through which the Competition Commission of Mauritius (“CCM”) in the drafting of the Rules of Procedure and Guidelines of the CCM. Nortons Inc. regularly advises clients in Mauritius and, together with its partner firm, assists clients in various franco phone african jurisdictions.
Nortons Inc. directors have actively participated in numerous stakeholder engagement sessions, before various regional regulatory authorities including the Namibian Competition Commission.
Africa, which has long experienced slow economic growth, has experienced strong economic growth over the past decade. In fact, over the past decade, six of the world’s ten fastest growing countries were African, and in eight of the past ten years, Africa’s economy has grown faster than that of East Asia, according to a recent report in The Economist.
According to estimates by the International Monetary Fund, Africa is expected to grow by 6% in 2011 and by slightly less than 6% in 2012, despite the growing concerns over the economic slowdown in Europe and North America.
Although the past decade’s continued growth is partly as a result of the commodities boom, which resulted in higher revenue from natural resources, African countries are diversifying their economies by increasingly developing their manufacturing and services offerings. Poor infrastructure remains an obstacle to doing business in Africa, but is increasingly improved by Chinese infrastructure investments and by innovative solutions provided by the fast-growing telecommunications sector.
These positive changes explain why the rate of foreign direct investment attracted by Africa has increased nearly tenfold in the past decade.
However, despite its growing attractiveness, doing business in Africa remains challenging from a regulatory perspective, with various countries, including Botswana, Kenya, Mauritius, Namibia, Swaziland and Zambia, having only recently implemented competition/antitrust legislation, and with many other countries, most notably Nigeria, Angola and Mozambique, expected to implement competition/antitrust legislation in the near future.
Nortons Inc. advises its clients on multi-jurisdictional merger filings throughout the region.
Directors of the firm are also involved in various initiatives to develop the capacity of competition authorities across the continent.